(Photo: Japanese delegation to Tel Reches, published in YNet News)

(Photo: Japanese delegation to Tel Reches, published in YNet News)

It seems everywhere you dig in Israel, archaeologists seem to find ancient synagogues.

That was the case again in the Galilee last week as a site called Tel Rekhesh, which corresponds to the first-century village of Anaharath, produced another one – just four inches underground.

It’s being called a Second Temple era discovery, which means it was there when Jesus preached in the Galilee. However, the only biblical reference to Anaharath is found in Joshua 19:19.

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Experts believe the agricultural estate was abandoned after the Bar Kokhba Revolt, which destroyed the more southern Kingdom of Judah but left the Galilee relatively undamaged. Dr. Aviam said it appeared the residents of the estate fled for an unknown reason, though the Romans conducted a scorched-earth military campaign against Jews throughout Israel after the Bar Kokhba Revolt.

The structure is reportedly nine meters long and eight meters wide

A team headed by Dr. Moti Aviam of the Kinneret Institute has been digging at Tel Rekhesh for six years.

It’s reportedly the first synagogue of its kind found in what was once a rural estate, unlike another found in what was an ancient city. He said the synagogue was found on what was in ancient times an agricultural estate, where several Jewish families lived.

The benches that line the walls, similar to those seen in Sephardic synagogues, provide evidence that the structure was a synagogue.

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